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(arrow)Does ADHD Exist?

Most experts agree that ADHD is a diagnosable disorder. However, there are outspoken critics who insist it's a fraud perpetrated by the psychiatric and pharmaceutical industries on families anxious to understand their childrens' behavior.

Here are the views of the critics: Peter Breggin, M.D., psychiatrist and author of Talking Back to Ritalin, and neurologist Fred Baughman. Also presented here are opposing views of: Russell Barkley, professor of psychiatry and neurology at University of Massachusetts Medical Center; Denver psychiatrist William Dodson; and Peter Jensen, M.D. director of Columbia University's Center for the Advancement of Children's Mental Health. Their comments are drawn from their extended interviews with FRONTLINE.

(arrow)The Business of ADHD

Among those who agree that ADHD is a valid disorder there are nonetheless questions about the role of pharmaceutical companies and HMOs in the rising rates of ADHD and drug treatment.

Here are the views of psychiatrist William Dodson M.D., who is paid by Shire Richwood Pharmaceuticals to speak to other doctors about Adderall, Shire Richwood's ADHD medication; Lawrence Diller, M.D., author of Running on Ritalin; Peter Jensen, M.D. director of Columbia University's Center for the Advancement of Children's Mental Health; neurologist Fred Baughman; Peter Breggin, M.D., psychiatrist and author of Talking Back to Ritalin; and Harold Koplewicz, M.D., director for the New York University Child Study Center. Their comments are drawn from their extended interviews with FRONTLINE.

(arrow)ADHD Lawsuits

Nationwide, class action suits have been filed alleging the manufacturers of Ritalin, the American Psychiatric Association, and CHADD have conspired to invent and promote the ADHD diagnosis in order to increase drug sales. Some of the lawyers involved in these suits worked on the 1998 tobacco industry settlement.
(arrow)UN Warnings on Ritalin

In conjunction with releasing its 1996 and 1997 annual reports, the UN's International Narcotics Control Board issued warnings about the dramatically increasing use of methylphenidate (Ritalin), primarily in the U.S. The Board cited concerns about the possibility of over-diagnosis of ADHD and consequent overuse of the drug, and, the potential for abuse. [Subsequent annual reports from the INCB--which state the U.S. produces/consumes more than 80% of the world's methylphenidate--were not released with similar warnings.]


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